Breed: New Zealand Red
Description: The actual color of the New Zealand red is known in horse breeding circles as sorrel. It is not as deep as chestnut nor as light as the tan rabbit. If the red is too dark it is inclined to be rather untidy; if it is too light, it is more yellow than red.
The only white allowed in the red is that on the underside of the four feet and also under the tail. Because the fur is apt to be thin around the eye, it gives a distinct eye circle impression. However, it is not a true eye circle. The eyes are hazel colored and the toenails are dark.
The New Zealand red is perhaps the most popular as an exhibition rabbit. This is certainly true in the United States where it originated. The red was reportedly developed by crossing golden fawn sports with a cross of the Flemish giant and the Belgian bare. Although it has never been proven conclusively, it is now the accepted theory. Years ago a rabbit similar to the New Zealand red, but called the old English red, could be found in England. Although the old English red is extinct, two contemporary rabbits are very similar: the “Fauve de Bourgogne” in France and the “Fulvo di Burgogna” in Italy.